A cannabis legalization project presented Tuesday in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives . And aims to promote equity and social justice through cannabis regulation.
Democratic MP Jake Wheatley, a strong advocate of legalization, announced that his proposal would be “the most comprehensive and sustained legislation providing for a legal adult cannabis industry”.
He acknowledged that some legislators remain ideologically opposed to reform, which prevents “Pennsylvania from having such an important bipartisan conversation. But after failing to introduce a similar bill last year, the MP revised it in light of feedback from Pennsylvanian citizens.
Even though some of my colleagues are not ready to be part of the solution. People from all over the state have shown how passionate they are about this issue. Which has made it easier for me to improve the bill. He said.
Bill HB 2050 proposes a tax structure, funding initiatives and the legal framework surrounding the production, processing, and distribution of cannabis. It also provides for amnesty and the release of people incarcerated for non-violent drug-related offenses.
A 10% wholesale tax is to apply to business-to-business transactions. However, producers and processors working with existing farms in the state would be exempt from this tax. Individual consumers would be subject to an excise tax on retail sales that would range from 6% for the first 2 years, to 12% for the next 2 years and 19% thereafter.
Keeping the tax low to start with and increasing it over time is an excellent example of the returns . We have received in numerous meetings with stakeholders. Said Wheatley.
Taxes from cannabis would go into a Commonwealth reinvestment fund to finance a range of social programs. For example to promote the participation of minorities and women in the industry, student loan repayments, a school after-school care program and a prevention campaign on adult cannabis use.
The failure of the war on drugs has claimed countless victims. Perhaps the most important aspect of this legislation is my Cannabis Clean Slate,” wrote the representative. By legalizing cannabis use and simultaneously removing old convictions, releasing non-violent prisoners previously convicted of drug offenses. The Commonwealth can do its part to repair the damage of the past 40 years.
My legislation is the result of social and criminal justice reform, aided by legal use by adults. My efforts have been and will continue to be endless in the pursuit of adult cannabis regulation for more than 60% of Pennsylvanians who support it. I hope you will listen to your constituents and support my legislation.
Governor Tom Wolf (D), who initially opposed the change in policy, spoke out in favor of legalizing cannabis last year.